March 13, 2019

Think you know books?

Which one starts like this? Click on a book below to answer

Serene was a word you could put to Brooklyn. Especially in the summer of 1912. Somber, as a word, was better. But it did not apply to Williamsburg, Brooklyn.
Brooklyn, Burning
Steve Brezenoff

Brooklyn, Burning

By: Steve Brezenoff
Recommended for grade(s): 8

When you're sixteen and no one understands who you are, sometimes the only choice left is to run. If you're lucky, you find a place that accepts you, no questions asked. And if you're really lucky, that place has a drum set, a place to practice, and a place to sleep. For Kid, the streets of Greenpoint, Brooklyn, are that place. Over the course of two scorching summers, Kid falls hopelessly in love and then loses nearly everything and everyone worth caring about. But as summer draws to a close, Kid finally finds someone who can last beyond the sunset. Brooklyn, Burning is a fearless and unconventional love story. Brezenoff never identifies the gender of his two main characters, and readers will draw their own conclusions about Kid and Scout. Whatever they decide, Brooklyn, Burning is not a book any teen reader will soon forget. Brooklyn, Burning is the story of two summers in Brooklyn, two summers of fires, music, loss, and ultimately, love. -- From Carolrhoda Lab

Where to Find

Score a physical copy of the book.

A Tree Grows in Brooklyn
Betty Smith

A Tree Grows in Brooklyn

By: Betty Smith
Recommended for grade(s): 8, 9, 10

The American classic about a young girl's coming-of-age at the turn of the century. From the moment she entered the world, Francie needed to be made of stern stuff, for the often harsh life of Williamsburg demanded fortitude, precocity, and strength of spirit. Often scorned by neighbors for her family's erratic and eccentric behavior-such as her father Johnny's taste for alcohol and Aunt Sissy's habit of marrying serially without the formality of divorce-no one, least of all Francie, could say that the Nolans' life lacked drama. By turns overwhelming, sublime, heartbreaking, and uplifting, the Nolans' daily experiences are tenderly threaded with family connectedness and raw with honesty. Betty Smith has, in the pages of A Tree Grows in Brooklyn, captured the joys of humble Williamsburg life-from "junk day" on Saturdays, when the children of Francie's neighborhood traded their weekly take for pennies, to the special excitement of holidays, bringing cause for celebration and revelry. Betty Smith has artfully caught this sense of exciting life in a novel of childhood, replete with incredibly rich moments of universal experiences--a truly remarkable achievement for any writer.  --From HarperCollins

Where to Find

Score a physical copy of the book.

Angela's Ashes: A Memoir
Frank McCourt

Angela's Ashes: A Memoir

By: Frank McCourt
Recommended for grade(s): 10, 11, 12

"When I look back on my childhood I wonder how I managed to survive at all. It was, of course, a miserable childhood: the happy childhood is hardly worth your while. Worse than the ordinary miserable childhood is the miserable Irish childhood, and worse yet is the miserable Irish Catholic childhood." So begins the luminous memoir of Frank McCourt, born in Depression-era Brooklyn to recent Irish immigrants and raised in the slums of Limerick, Ireland. Frank's mother, Angela, has no money to feed the children since Frank's father, Malachy, rarely works, and when he does he drinks his wages. Yet Malachy—exasperating, irresponsible, and beguiling—does nurture in Frank an appetite for the one thing he can provide: a story. Frank lives for his father's tales of Cuchulain, who saved Ireland, and of the Angel on the Seventh Step, who brings his mother babies. —from the website of Simon & Schuster

Where to Find

Score a physical copy of the book.

Last Days of Summer: A Novel
Steve Kluger

Last Days of Summer: A Novel

By: Steve Kluger
Recommended for grade(s): 11, 12, College Plus

Last Days of Summer is the story of Joey Margolis, neighborhood punching bag, growing up goofy and mostly fatherless in Brooklyn in the early 1940s. A boy looking for a hero, Joey decides to latch on to Charlie Banks, the all-star third baseman for the New York Giants. But Joey's chosen champion doesn't exactly welcome the extreme attention of a persistent young fan with an overactive imagination. Then again, this strange, needy kid might be exactly what Banks needs. -- From Harper Collins

Where to Find

Score a physical copy of the book.